Buffalo Sabres Look to Fly Past the Flyers And End Losing Streak

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After an embarrassing loss to the Minnesota Wild, the Buffalo Sabres are back tonight to face off against the Flyers. A lot went wrong last game (and that’s one heck of an understatement to type) and Coach Ted Nolan himself said that it was embarrassing in his post game interview. The Sabres will have their hands full against a soaring Flyers offense, especially leading league scorer Jakub Voracek.

There are a number of things that need to improve in the players’ game tonight, and if someone doesn’t step up now and take charge for the Sabres, it will certainly be another night of frustration and terrible hockey to watch.

Sabres Scope

The Sabres need someone to step up and be a leader right now. Brian Gionta has been out recently due to his head injury. In the meantime Josh Gorges and Matt Moulson (especially Moulson) have not stepped into their roles as alternate captains and led this team to anything inspiring as of late. Tonight, the Sabres will be having a similar lineup to Thursday, but the primary change will be Michal Neuvirth in goal. His play, supplemented with some newfound leadership will only help them tonight.

Against the Flyers, the Buffalo Sabres will need to lean on the shoulders of a younger player, but one that has shown that he can do all the little things. Brian Flynn is the man the needs to step up tonight. Flynn is the man who spends most of his time charging up and down the ice trying to get the puck to his teammates. His defensive effort is second to none, and he has the vision to set up his line mates for some scoring. Heck, we are talking about the man who assisted on Mike Weber‘s first goal of the season, and it came off of a great rush and his pass.

Flyers Scope

When I look at the Flyers, I see a strong offensive force, with an enormous goaltending issue. They boast offensive power house Claude Giroux, and recent dominant scorer Jakub Voracek. These players are what the Sabres need to keep content pressure on all night. If they back off for a second and give either of these guys just a little bit of space, Neuvirth will pay for it.

The Flyers weakness is (still) their goaltending. They seem to have lost a bit of faith in the ability of Steve Mason, and even Ray Emery, and they have now turned to a 33 year old rookie named Rob Zepp. This is the hole that the Buffalo Sabres need to pick on all night if they can.

Prediction

If someone on this roster steps up and takes a leadership role then the Sabres will be able to end this streak before it gets even worse. It’s not going to be a pretty game, but it can at least look like a real hockey game if someone steps up, and the rest of the team puts in an honest effort.

I’ll predict a 3-2 Sabres win tonight because I do believe that they have what it takes to break this losing streak tonight.

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